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How to trade in or sell your old iPhone

Person looking at smartphone considering trade-in

So, you’ve considered the pros and cons of buying a new iPhone®, and you’re ready to upgrade to the shiny new model. But what should you do with your old device? 

Rather than just tossing your old cell phone in your junk drawer, consider selling or trading it in. We’ll walk you through the process. 

At Asurion, we protect and take care of your tech, whether you need to set up your new iPhone or replace your iPhone battery. Here’s our guide on where to sell and get the best trade-in value for your iPhone.

Where’s the best place to sell or trade in an old iPhone?

If you’re wondering, where can I sell my old iPhone? Or, if you want to know if you should trade in your iPhone, here are some options: 

Trade in your old iPhone with your mobile carrier or Apple  

If you’d like to trade in your old iPhone for credit towards a new one, most mobile carriers, like AT&T and Verizon, offer trade-in programs for old iPhones. Apple, or stores like Best Buy® also accept trade-ins. 

Check out our guide on how to get the most trade-in value for your iPhone

Sell your old iPhone yourself

You’ll likely make more money by selling your old iPhone yourself, but it will take some work. If you list your device online on eBay®, Craigslist®, or Facebook® Marketplace, you’ll sell directly to another person, which means posting pictures, answering questions about the condition of your phone, handling shipping costs, creating shipping labels, and sorting payment. You also take the risk of dealing with an unknown individual as opposed to a reputable company.

Sell your used iPhone to a buy-back service 

A quick and easy way to sell your old iPhone is with an online store like Gizmogul™ that specializes in buying used smartphones. These sites will typically give you a price estimate for your device and list it for you right away. Check out Flipsy™ to compare trade-in values at multiple buy-back stores at once. 

Use a marketplace to sell or trade in your old iPhone

You can connect with buyers quickly by listing your iPhone on a marketplace that specializes in tech to buy and sell, like BackMarket ® or Amazon®. You can set your own price for your old iPhone, but that doesn’t guarantee it will sell. Also, you’ll pay a fee when the sale is complete.

When’s the best time to sell your old iPhone?

Here are a few things to consider when deciding the best time to sell your used iPhone: 

New iPhone releases 

If you can, sell your device before Apple® announces the release of its new iPhone models, which they typically do in September every year. You’ll get more for an older model before a new one is announced. 

Worried about being without a phone until you get your new one? Many companies offering buy-backs or trade-ins give you a grace period of up to 30 days from the time you sell your phone and when you have to send it in. 

Carrier contract 

If you want to sell your old iPhone, check if you’re due for an upgrade from your carrier. If your phone is paid off and you’re eligible for an upgrade, it’s probably the right time to sell your old phone to help pay for a new one. 

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Prepare your iPhone for trade-in or sale

Here’s how to prep your iPhone for a trade in or sale:

Back up your old iPhone

Before you sell or trade in your device, make sure to back it up so you can save—and later transfer—all your important data like your contacts, photos, and videos. 

To learn more, check out our guide on how to back up an iPhone.

Unpair your accessories

If you have accessories like an Apple Watch® or a pair of AirPods®, you’ll want to use them with your new phone. To do that, you’ll need to unpair your Apple Watch and any Bluetooth® accessories you’ve connected. For step-by-step instructions on how to unpair your accessories, check out our guide on how to get the most trade-in value for your iPhone. 

Turn off Find My on your iPhone

The Find My™ feature on the iPhone lets you locate your device, which is especially useful if your phone is lost or stolen. But if you’re selling or trading in your device, you’ll need to turn off the tracker, so you don’t have access to its location. 

To learn more, follow the simple steps in our guide on how to turn off Find My iPhone.  

Clean your device 

Before listing your iPhone for sale or offering it for trade-in, make sure to clean your device, and remove its screen protector, so it looks great. If it’s clean and in good condition, you’ll get the best possible price. 

Factory Reset

The next step before you sell or trade in your iPhone is to complete a factory reset to remove all your personal information. If you’ve backed up your device, just follow these easy steps to factory reset your iPhone

Remove the SIM card

The SIM card stores data like your carrier and billing information, so you’ll want to remove it and keep it safe until you’re ready to insert it into your new iPhone. Want to learn more? Check out our guide to how to remove the SIM card from an iPhone

Tried these steps and still need help? We got you. Get your tech problem solved when you call or chat with an expert now.

*The Asurion® trademarks and logos are the property of Asurion, LLC. All rights reserved. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Asurion is not affiliated with, sponsored by, or endorsed by any of the respective owners of the other trademarks appearing herein.*


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